Friday, May 16, 2008

Tip to save money with your iPhone by not using your wallet

As reported by LifeHacker:

Slim Down Your Wallet w/ Your iPhone

... after reading over some of our wallet-slimming tips, he realized he had a powerful wallet-slimming tool in his pocket all the time: his iPhone. His idea? Rather than reducing his membership cards to just one club card, he scanned his membership cards to his computer, then synced them to his iPhone as an album called WalletCards. According to the post, his phone-friendly cards even scan successfully. You're still going to be at the mercy of whether or not the workers are willing to accept your scanned cards, but if they are, you can carry around all the membership cards you want without adding any bulk to your wallet.


I haven't tried to scan a card but I'm going to do this today and try it at my local grocery store. I have almost 25 loyalty/membership cards!

This got me thinking, how could this leverage the technology further and make the process more efficient?

Geolocation? My iPhone knows where I am within a few hundred feet most of the time. So why not have the iPhone compare my location to Google Maps and then present the most likely card I will need? If there's a grocery store right next door to a Sam's Club you might wind up with two cards to chose from, but that's better than sorting thru dozens - and you could just have a button on the iPhone home screen that would automate the process rather than having to sort through the photos on iPhoto.

I can see a slight problem with this though - stores willing accept a scan ... how do they know you are using YOUR loyalty card. The rub there is that I use a grocery store card (Bilo BONUScard) that I found five years ago.

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